It’s Friday, we have seven games on tonight’s slate, all the games have a total of at least 222 and no teams are playing the second leg of a back-to-back. I must channel my inner Ice Cube and mumble, “I gotta say today was a good day.” PHO and CHA are playing on Saturday, though, so the chance for shenanigans to fog up the windows is elevated. This slate may not just have fog, but plenty of chalk misting through the air. Malcolm Brogdon ($6,500), Jalen Williams ($6,500) and Isaiah Joe ($4,200) will all likely start due to injuries and be the most rostered players on the slate. Shai Gilgeous-Alexander, Nic Claxton and Scoot Henderson are the big names not playing. Tyrese Haliburton ($9,300), Darius Garland ($7,600), Jarrett Allen ($6,000) and RJ Barrett ($6,500) are all questionable.
DraftKings Sportsbook has the totals for every game in the 222 to 226 range. The CLE/IND has the tightest spread at 1.5 points while MIA is the biggest favorite at 9 points over WAS. IND, WAS and POR are home dogs.
Malcolm Brogdon, Portland Trail Blazers vs. Memphis Grizzlies ($6,500) – I love all of Curry, Mitchell, Brunson and Herro, as they all should be in fantasy-friendly environments. Curry and Mitchell are very expensive, so it comes down to the value available. Giddey should take over for Shai. Brunson and Herro are cheaper and could match Curry and Mitchell, but they are priced up a bit more than normal. Brogdon is priced well, will start, should play a ton of minutes and is averaging 1.18 DKFP per minute. As a result, he will likely be one of the most popular players on the slate, so decisions decisions. Memphis has been playing at the fifth-fastest pace and is only 22nd in defensive efficiency. The cherry on top is that they have given the biggest fantasy points per minute boost to point guards.
Other Options - Stephen Curry ($10,100), Donovan Mitchell ($10,000), Josh Giddey ($8,400), Jalen Brunson ($8,300), Tyler Herro ($8,100)
Josh Richardson, Miami Heat vs. Washington Wizards ($4,000) – Richardson missed the start of the season but has played in the last two games, receiving 23 minutes in the first game and 30 in the most recent. He’s not starting, but there aren’t many options in the Heat backcourt so Richardson should get as much run as he can handle. He’s only averaging 0.52 DKFP per minute this season, but his career number is closer to 0.70. He shot 1-of-9 in the most recent contest while racking up three rebounds, three assists and a steal. He’s not the most exciting fantasy option, but somewhere around 20 DKFP could be in the offering while the environment could provide more, as the Wizards are first in offensive pace and 26th in defensive efficiency.
Other Options - Immanuel Quickley ($5,700), Coby White ($5,100)
Jalen Williams, Oklahoma City Thunder vs. Golden State Warriors ($6,500) – Williams averages 0.93 DKFP per minute. The usage rate has been 21% and he’s contributed a little something something in every category. He’s been solid yet unspectacular this season. We know he has talent, though, and that could shine today with Shai out. As with Brogdon and Joe, Williams is going to be very popular so decisions will have to be made.
Other Options - Jaren Jackson Jr. ($8,500), DeMar DeRozan ($7,300), Caris LeVert ($6,700)
Isaiah Joe, Oklahoma City Thunder vs. Golden State Warriors ($4,100) – With Shai out, Giddey will likely slide down to point guard while Joe could get the start at shooting guard. This has not been confirmed yet, so make sure to check lineups. Joe is a very good shooter and provides spacing. While he’s only converting 34% of his attempts from downtown this season, he’s a career 38% shooter. In addition, he’s averaging 0.82 DKFP per minute on the season, more than the 0.68 and 0.66 from Cason Wallace ($5,400) and Aaron Wiggins ($3,900).
Other Options - Lugentz Dort ($5,600), Lonnie Walker IV ($5,300), Ziaire Williams ($4,600), Toumani Camara ($3,700), Derrick Jones Jr. ($3,600)
Nikola Vucevic, Chicago Bulls vs. Brooklyn Nets ($7,500) – Over the first three games, Vucevic had eight, 15 and 11 shot attempts. In the two most recent contests, he’s been fed with 17 and 19 shots, resulting in 21 and 24 points. He’s also grabbed 20 and 17 rebounds with a total of three steals. This has translated to back-to-back 50-DKFP burgers. The metrics say that Brooklyn has done an excellent job of neutralizing the FPPM to centers but I think Vucevic can eat up Ben Simmons ($7,000) down low if the Bulls keep feeding. And I don’t see why they wouldn’t.
Other Options - Bam Adebayo ($8,300), Evan Mobley ($8,100)
Xavier Tillman, Memphis Grizzlies at Portland Trail Blazers ($5,900) – After putting up 48 DKFP five games ago, it’s been rough sailing for Tillman. He scored 6 DKFP and played 14 minutes in the most recent contest and finished in the 20s in the prior two contests. The two most recent games were blowouts while he dealt with some foul trouble in the other. Those things can happen again tonight, so keep that in mind. If he plays close to the 34 minutes he was getting in his first two games, Tillman could feast. He averages 0.97 DKFP per minute and the matchup is a pristine one. Portland has boosted the FPPM to opposing centers by a league-leading 17.64%.
Other Options - Brook Lopez ($5,600), Dario Saric ($4,200)
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I am a promoter at DraftKings and am also an avid fan and user (my username is sontzu) and may sometimes play on my personal account in the games that I offer advice on. Although I have expressed my personal view on the games and strategies above, they do not necessarily reflect the view(s) of DraftKings and do not constitute a representation that any particular strategy will guarantee success. All customers should use their own skill and judgment in building lineups. I may also deploy different players and strategies than what I recommend above. I am not an employee of DraftKings and do not have access to any non-public information.